"Most blessed of the patriarchs" : Thomas Jefferson and the empire of the imagination

by Annette Gordon-Reed

Other authorsPeter S. Onuf (Author.)
Hardcover, 2016





New York : Liveright Publishing Corporation, 2016.


Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Annette Gordon-Reed teams up with the country's leading Jefferson scholar, Peter S. Onuf, to present an absorbing and revealing character study that finally clarifies the philosophy of Thomas Jefferson. Tracing Jefferson's development and maturation from his youth to his old age, the authors explore what they call the "empire" of Jefferson's imagination--his expansive state of mind born of the intellectual influences and life experiences that led him into public life as a modern avatar of the enlightenment, who often likened himself to an ancient figure--"the most blessed of the patriarchs."

User reviews

LibraryThing member DLMorrese
This biography focuses on Jefferson's personal life, his home, his family, and his attitudes about them. He was progressive in many ways, a man of the Enlightenment, but his beliefs about gender, race, and religion remained constrained by his times. The impression I'm left with from this book is that Jefferson sincerely meant well and did his best.… (more)


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